Social Media

Venturing into Social Media

Communication has always been the most important part of any business.

Communication conveys your business ideals and goals, lets the customers and other companies know that you are there and have a product or service to offer.

Communication is vital to growth, without it a business will either stagnate or die. Advertising is a form of communication and advertising can be as simple a banner on the side of a vehicle, a magazine advert to something more involved such as a television campaign. The wider the audience you what to advertise to; the more expensive it becomes.

As long as there have been businesses there has been advertising.

Looking around ourselves I doubt we even notice how much advertising there is. It has become a part of our every day and just melts into our sub-conscious. We take a lot of forms of advertising for granted in today’s fast paced world but I bet if asked to look at and name brand logos we could name more than we realise. Many of the top brands communicate to us what is represented by their logos, whether it is taste, quality, reliability or value.

Communication, as already mentioned, is vital. but it is also fluid. Developing and changing with each generation to meet individual company needs to let the consumer know what is available.

Use of computers and the internet has grown in use in a relatively short space of time and has been accepted and amalgamated into the lives of businesses and consumers alike. In most every business a piece of technology is used to assist in the running of every day transactions, whether it be a computer system or an app on a smart phone used to place orders. Likewise, a growing number of consumers use either a laptop, tablet or smart phone to engage with the business world.

The engagement of consumers is not just limited to placing orders via their computers. Since the “invention” of social media, consumers are able to communicate in a real time way with businesses.

Traditional advertising means are still of use because this is a visual aid that is used to identify individual companies but now businesses have to “up” their game. They must engage and use social media to have a chance to grow.

Social media is not perfect, it can be a love it or hate it relationship and as there are numerous different forms of social media it can be confusing as to where to start. I believe there is no doubt every company should use some form of social media if only to “keep up with the Joneses”. We are embracing technology at a fast pace and serious consideration must be given in every business plan.

Where do you begin though? I typed “how many social media sites are there?” and picked the top listing from Google, which was Wikipedia (Jan 2017) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_social_networking_websites

Go look for yourselves, it’s astounding. Some of them are specialist and some are country-based, many of them I’ve not heard of. Even if you just searched for the “top social media sites” there is possibly anywhere from 15 to 25 depending on the website result you look at.

If you want to use social media to advertise your business, there is not enough time in a day to use the top 10 never mind the top 15 or so.

What do you do then if you want to start getting your business involved in social media? Pick the top 3?

Personally, I would pick one to start with. Pick the one you are most comfortable with, the one that you find the easiest to use. One you already use regularly when you’re not working and if you are one of the few that don’t use social media at all, ask your family and friends what they use.

Being comfortable with something familiar makes using it for business easier and not a “must do chore”.

Of course, there are companies out there that can take over your social media campaign. They are specialists, who know their market and how to use it. But I’m speaking to the small business owner here, who may not have the budget or even be sure if it would improve his ROI (return on investment).

Look around at other business, see what they are doing, see how they use social media to promote their business. Each have their own individual style, there are no right or wrongs.

One thing they all have in common though is consistency. They post items, pictures and comments regularly. Social media is a platform on which to talk about your business, communicate what you do and interact with both your customers and potential customers.

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